For another fascinating glimpse into humankind's future in space, read a sneak preview of Wil McCarthy's Bloom, coming in hardcover from Del Rey Books in Fall 1998.

Once again, Ganymede and Jupiter are at the forefront of a future that, though different from Clarke's, still seems terrifyingly possible.

In this breakthrough tour de force, Wil McCarthy dares to combine two branches of scientific study--space-travel technology and biotechnology--to create a chilling and very believable future. Bloom pits humankind against an enemy of its own creation, grown rampantly out of control.

In the late 21st century, manmade, self-replicating organisms called mycora--smaller than the tiniest bacterium--mutated and swept across the globe in a chain reaction so swift and deadly there was no time to act. No time to do anything but flee an Earth destroyed by the very science created to nurture and sustain it. Soon the entire inner system was consumed, incorporated into the lethal psychedelic bloom of the Mycosystem.

Scant years later, the remnants of humanity cling to the asteroid belt and the inhospitable moons of Jupiter. As the society known as the Immunity ekes out a precarious existence, fighting off the invasion of deadly mycospores while working feverishly to build a starship that will carry them to safety, an ominous discovery alters everything. Mycora are incorporating gene sequences to elude Immunity defenses--perhaps even to thrive in the harsh environment of the outer system. The only way to be sure is to journey into the diseased heart of the Mycosystem, from which no one has ever returned....